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Hands-on Look At USB 3.0, Spec Details Revealed

timothy posted about 6 years ago | from the pretty-ribbons-of-blue dept.

Upgrades 251

notdagreatbrain writes "Maximum PC dug up some new information about USB 3.0, got their hands on the new connectors, and even took a look inside the new cables. They learned several new details about the next-gen version of the ubiquitous interface. USB Superspeed will be backward compatible with USB 2.0. The maximum speed of the new spec is 4.8Gbps, which is ten times faster than hi-speed. Five new wires are bundled in the cable, four of them used for data transfer (bi-directional transfer is now supported). More power will also be funneled through the line, so you can charge more devices, faster. The wireless USB is also getting upgraded to version 1.1, and will include ultra-wide band frequency support and Near Field Communication for near-instant swipe-based syncing."

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Full speed, high speed, superspeed (4, Insightful)

martin-k (99343) | about 6 years ago | (#24703213)

After USB full speed and USB high speed, we now have USB superspeed. What comes next? Hyperspeed? FTL-speed?

Gotta love the marketing hyperbole...

Re:Full speed, high speed, superspeed (3, Funny)

dotancohen (1015143) | about 6 years ago | (#24703239)

After USB full speed and USB high speed, we now have USB superspeed. What comes next? Hyperspeed? FTL-speed?

Ridiculous speed.

Re:Full speed, high speed, superspeed (3, Funny)

HungryHobo (1314109) | about 6 years ago | (#24703269)

Unnecessary speed!

Re:Full speed, high speed, superspeed (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24703399)

ex-SCSI-me speed!

Re:Full speed, high speed, superspeed (5, Funny)

Mishra100 (841814) | about 6 years ago | (#24703485)

What? Nobody has said

WARP speed.

This is slashdot, this speed should be a given.

Re:Full speed, high speed, superspeed (1, Interesting)

Tenrosei (1305283) | about 6 years ago | (#24704133)

Next one will be called ReverseUSB. "As if to defy common sense, they say, the backward-moving pulse of light travels faster than light." http://www.world-science.net/othernews/060512_lightfrm.htm [world-science.net]

Re:Full speed, high speed, superspeed (1)

chunk08 (1229574) | about 6 years ago | (#24704605)

Weird...
But tnx for the link. Not sure how much credit I give it, but it was interesting.

Woosh (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24704767)

There is more to scifi than star trek. This is one of those times...

Re:Full speed, high speed, superspeed (1)

dotancohen (1015143) | about 6 years ago | (#24704891)

What? Nobody has said

WARP speed.

This is slashdot, this speed should be a given.

Which is why it was not said.

Re:Full speed, high speed, superspeed (5, Funny)

moriya (195881) | about 6 years ago | (#24703353)

No no, Ridiculous speed is too slow. We're going... Ludicrous speed!

Re:Full speed, high speed, superspeed (5, Funny)

antifoidulus (807088) | about 6 years ago | (#24703401)

Ludicrous speed is great, save for the gaudy plaid cables that are required.

Yogurt brand cables (3, Funny)

Count_Froggy (781541) | about 6 years ago | (#24704215)

Don't forget the Yogurt brand cables and other devices.

May the Schwartz be with you!

Re:Full speed, high speed, superspeed (2, Funny)

Ramze (640788) | about 6 years ago | (#24703965)

Ludicrous speed!

Then they go the plaid!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HB7tc9pVvYg [youtube.com]

(link to Spaceballs clip on YouTube)

Re:Full speed, high speed, superspeed (1)

Joe The Dragon (967727) | about 6 years ago | (#24704439)

light speed

Re:Full speed, high speed, superspeed (1)

tobiasly (524456) | about 6 years ago | (#24704573)

Venti speed.

Re:Full speed, high speed, superspeed (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24703275)

USB HOLY SHIT!

Re:Full speed, high speed, superspeed (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24703317)

Lame attempt at karma whoring.

Re:Full speed, high speed, superspeed (2, Funny)

Saint Stephen (19450) | about 6 years ago | (#24703347)

ob Ren Stimpy...

"prepare to surge to sub-light speed!.... en.... gage!!!!!!!!!!!"

space............ madnesssssssss.......

Re:Full speed, high speed, superspeed (1)

TheDarkMaster (1292526) | about 6 years ago | (#24703383)

ship reactors will support USB 4.0? Damn, Scott is not here anymore to say :(

Re:Full speed, high speed, superspeed (1)

illumastorm (172101) | about 6 years ago | (#24703505)

They just don't have the power.

Re:Full speed, high speed, superspeed (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24703541)

Ludicrous Speed

Re:Full speed, high speed, superspeed (1)

Mattsson (105422) | about 6 years ago | (#24703679)

After USB superspeed:
USB warp 1
USB warp 1.1
USB warp 1.2
etc. ^_^

Re:Full speed, high speed, superspeed (2, Funny)

Tweenk (1274968) | about 6 years ago | (#24704753)

Lint Speed of course. But we'll need someone extremely scared to go this fast. Maybe each USB 4.0 device will incorporate a clone of Arthur.

Re:Full speed, high speed, superspeed (1)

Drathos (1092) | about 6 years ago | (#24704885)

Plaid

I'm just going to wait... (4, Funny)

bucklesl (73547) | about 6 years ago | (#24703217)

...for ludicrous speed.

Re:I'm just going to wait... (2, Funny)

Daimanta (1140543) | about 6 years ago | (#24703281)

After that comes "holy shit". I'd love to see that one personally.

Re:I'm just going to wait... (4, Funny)

smoker2 (750216) | about 6 years ago | (#24703867)

just follow the pope into the woods ...

Re:I'm just going to wait... (1)

Fumus (1258966) | about 6 years ago | (#24704117)

USB speed names from UT. How cool is that?

Re:I'm just going to wait... (1)

N!k0N (883435) | about 6 years ago | (#24703875)

They've gone plaid!

What I want to know (3, Insightful)

HungryHobo (1314109) | about 6 years ago | (#24703225)

Yes this is great but have any controls along the lines of "trusted computing" been slipped in to these devices. I ask only because it seems to be the fashion now days to try to put as many controls into new technology as possible.

Re:What I want to know (2, Insightful)

dotancohen (1015143) | about 6 years ago | (#24703247)

Yes this is great but have any controls along the lines of "trusted computing" been slipped in to these devices. I ask only because it seems to be the fashion now days to try to put as many controls into new technology as possible.

Why don't you write to the bodies involved with the development and ask them? If we as consumers don't display our wariness, then why shouldn't the engineers put the "controls" in?

Re:What I want to know (3, Insightful)

HungryHobo (1314109) | about 6 years ago | (#24703295)

I go the easier route. I just don't buy them.
Plus slashdot has so many engineers reading it that they're more likely to see it than if I email some companies customer care department.

Re:What I want to know (4, Insightful)

dotancohen (1015143) | about 6 years ago | (#24704145)

I go the easier route. I just don't buy them.

Really? I'd like to see you NOT buy then new 512GB Disk On Key when it comes out in three years because it uses the USB 3 spec, which may or may not contain content controls.

Seriously, stop relying on the engineers to come to you, and start writing to them. The same thing goes for Linux software support: if you want Solidworks to run on Linux, then write to the company and tell them that!

It's going to break. (5, Informative)

dotancohen (1015143) | about 6 years ago | (#24703229)

I've seen too many people destroy USB 1 and 2 connectors by repeatedly wiggling the plug out of the sockets to the point where the sockets no longer hold the connector anymore. Now, USB 3 is going to be even deeper, providing even more leverage to ruin the socket with.

Tip: you can repair the USB 1 and 2 socktet by opening the case, placing a thin, flat object on the OUTSIDE on the socket, and giving the object a light tap. Just enough to bend it slightly inward again. Master this skill before USB 3 becomes mainstream.

Re:It's going to break. (1)

HungryHobo (1314109) | about 6 years ago | (#24703243)

compared to old connecters USB sockets seem to deal pretty well with this kind of thing.
Any ideas for how they could make the sockets more durable?

Re:It's going to break. (2, Insightful)

dotancohen (1015143) | about 6 years ago | (#24704173)

Any ideas for how they could make the sockets more durable?

Require the socket to be made of a thicker gauge of steel.

Re:It's going to break. (2, Interesting)

hey! (33014) | about 6 years ago | (#24703503)

This could be fixed if they simply specified the minimum mechanical strength of the sockets and plugs.

A lot of USB cables and devices have connectors you can bend with finger pressure. That's Ok for things like printers that are unplugged once in a blue moon, but it's not good for things like cameras that are frequently connected and disconnected.

Re:It's going to break. (2, Insightful)

British (51765) | about 6 years ago | (#24703813)

When I play a game that uses my SOCOM headset, I have to plug it in otherwise ALL audio routes through it. In order to save wear & tear on the USB port on my case, I just use one of those 7-inch USB extension cables. If I wear that out, no big deal.

Just wish Windows would let ME turn off & on the headset in software.

Re:It's going to break. (2, Interesting)

NormalVisual (565491) | about 6 years ago | (#24703879)

I've seen too many people destroy USB 1 and 2 connectors by repeatedly wiggling the plug out of the sockets to the point where the sockets no longer hold the connector anymore

IMO it's because the standard specifies a crappy connector with almost no redeeming values mechanically, other than being easy to plug/unplug. They're practically guaranteed to work themselves loose unless the connection is absolutely left alone. There really needs to be some kind of easy, cheap locking mechanism on par with the modular RJ-45 plugs to securely hold the connector in place and prevent the stresses you're talking about. I've had to deal with USB several times in an industrial automation context, and I just hate the connectors. The only decent implementation I've seen is on the cheapest Cognex vision-system cameras, which use a mini-USB connector within a screw-on fixture that locks the connector into place on the camera body and prevents any movement.

Re:It's going to break. (1)

PopeRatzo (965947) | about 6 years ago | (#24704011)

There really needs to be some kind of easy, cheap locking mechanism on par with the modular RJ-45 plugs to securely hold the connector in place

DING DING DING!

I do live performances using my digital audio workstation, and several of my controllers use USB because it does a nice job of carrying midi data. They do loosen up. On the other hand, when someone (usually me) trips over the cable, it doesn't bring all my hardware crashing down. I just reach down and plug the USB cable back in. I do go through a lot of USB cables though.

Now, if they could just make the power flow through USB hubs more reliably. There are too many gizmos that won't work unless they are plugged directly into the USB interface, so I have to use a desktop box instead of my laptop.

Re:It's going to break. (1)

dotancohen (1015143) | about 6 years ago | (#24704063)

I do go through a lot of USB cables though.

The problem is that wiggling destroys the socket, not the replaceable cable.

Duh (1)

A nonymous Coward (7548) | about 6 years ago | (#24704497)

I do go through a lot of USB cables though.

The problem is that wiggling destroys the socket, not the replaceable cable.

The solution is to put the extension cable into the socket so it ends with a socket, and if that socket end is destroyed by too many cable changes, you replace it. If you get 100 changes per destroyed socket, you can replace the extension cable 100 times, and if you take more care with that than regular changes, you will get more than 100 changes there.

Re:It's going to break. (4, Insightful)

dotancohen (1015143) | about 6 years ago | (#24704101)

RJ-* is great for "plug it in and leave it alone" situations, which it was designed for. However, it is terrible for connections that must be made and broken on a regular basis, which is what USB was designed for. In particular, the plastic locking mechanism is very fragile and prone to snapping off. I'd say that I've seen that more often than even loose USB sockets.

Re:It's going to break. (3, Insightful)

Reece400 (584378) | about 6 years ago | (#24703991)

For my desktop I always make a habit of using usb ports on a PCI card for devices that I plug in & out often so that when the connectors become damages I can cheaply & easily replace the card.

Re:It's going to break. (2, Insightful)

Reece400 (584378) | about 6 years ago | (#24704015)

Using an external USB hub would also work if the bandwidth bottleneck isn't an issue.

Re:It's going to break. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24704761)

First I'll have to find a broken USB socket...

It stands for (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24703251)

USB stands for Universal Serial Bus. See Wikipedia [wikipedia.org]

Re:It stands for (5, Funny)

gEvil (beta) (945888) | about 6 years ago | (#24703565)

USB stands for Universal Serial Bus. See Wikipedia

Thanks! Do you happen to have an explanation for that IBM thing that's confounded me all these years?

Re:It stands for (3, Funny)

gbjbaanb (229885) | about 6 years ago | (#24703711)

lol. but - read the summary: Five new wires are bundled in the cable, four of them used for data transfer (bi-directional transfer is now supported)

So its really a UPB now :)

Re:It stands for (1)

Reece400 (584378) | about 6 years ago | (#24704049)

Very True! now if they just called it that, they could cut off the ridiculous 'super speed' suffix and start fresh.

USB "Superspeed" (3, Funny)

Apple Acolyte (517892) | about 6 years ago | (#24703263)

Did an Intel marketing manager get the name superspeed from his or her 4 year-old? Couple that with Core i7 and you've got. . . pretty crappy names. I guess Intel's naming schemes have historically stunk (mostly). Here are my suggestions for USB 4, 5 and 6:

USB Superduperspeed
USB Ubersuperduper
USB Ubersuperdupercalifragalisticexpialdocious

Re:USB "Superspeed" (4, Funny)

Andrzej Sawicki (921100) | about 6 years ago | (#24704565)

Did an Intel marketing manager get the name superspeed from his or her 4 year-old?

Well, they are also bringing back the Turbo button, so who knows.

Re:USB "Superspeed" (1)

Chabil Ha' (875116) | about 6 years ago | (#24704875)

Mary Poppins, is that you?

and Yet... (5, Interesting)

Lumpy (12016) | about 6 years ago | (#24703279)

It will still be slower for sustained transfers than Firewire 400.

The most important part, did they finally make it non CPU intensive?

I also really want to know what they are targeting with it. as Portable storage has esata which will kick it's butt, and USB2.0 is fine for everything else except video, and we have that standardized on firewire.

Re:and Yet... (4, Insightful)

jimicus (737525) | about 6 years ago | (#24703327)

It will still be slower for sustained transfers than Firewire 400.

The most important part, did they finally make it non CPU intensive?

I doubt it. In order to do that, you'd have to move work out of drivers and into silicon, which is quite a bit more expensive.

Re:and Yet... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24704125)

At which point you might as well use Firewire.

Different tools for different jobs. USB shouldn't be expected to sustain high-speed transfers. I frankly don't see the point behind USB 3 (except that sometimes good-enough might be good-enough)

Re:and Yet... (1)

MtViewGuy (197597) | about 6 years ago | (#24703403)

I see two uses of USB 3.0 connections:

1) Faster access to external storage devices (though I wonder how it compares against eSATA or IEEE-1394 connections).

2) Faster transfer of digital video to computer from an HDTV digital camcorder. Mind you, since many HDTV digital camcorders have IEEE-1394 connectors, we may not see new HDTV camcorders sport USB 3.0 connections soon.

Re:and Yet... (3, Informative)

Lumpy (12016) | about 6 years ago | (#24703471)

Actually HDTV camcorders dont have Firewire. HDV camcorders do.

real HDTV camcorders have too much bandwidth to use firewire 400 for transfer and record to a medium that can be read in the computer (Redone uses an array of CF cards, pro cameras use a different system)

The HDV camcorders record low grade Mpeg4 in the same bandwidth that a DV SDTV camcorder uses. It's by loose definition HD by resolution, but the artifacting and quality is so low it's only good for home use.

I use a Canon HD-G1 $5800 "HD" camcorder.. It's not HD by my definition even though it records 1440X1080i. (1/2 HD is what ALL of them record except for the jvc HD7... yes I have one of those as well)

Re:and Yet... (2, Informative)

TheRaven64 (641858) | about 6 years ago | (#24704223)

Uncompressed 720p only needs 79MB/s to transfer. FireWire 400 can get close to 50MB/s in real-world use, so it's certainly possible to stream lossless 720p over FireWire 400. FireWire 800 is fast enough for uncompressed video at this resolution.

I've only used SD cameras, but they tend to use a variant of MJPEG, so each frame is losslessly compressed but there is no interframe compression. Using something like MJPEG-2000, you can easily stream 1080p over FireWire 800.

Re:and Yet... (1)

Steve Max (1235710) | about 6 years ago | (#24705137)

s/lossless/lossy/g. Or do you really believe JPEG is lossless?

Re:and Yet... (1)

nabsltd (1313397) | about 6 years ago | (#24705017)

The HDV camcorders record low grade Mpeg4 in the same bandwidth that a DV SDTV camcorder uses.

Perhaps you meant to say "MPEG-4", which would still be wrong.

HDV [wikipedia.org] is MPEG-2 at up to 25Mbps...I'd hardly call that "low grade". Although it might not do for fast motion, for a movie or TV production it's more than good enough. As a matter of fact, many TV shows use it, especially when portability is important.

Re:and Yet... (1)

poco153 (853725) | about 6 years ago | (#24703795)

I use USB for tons of stuff: It charges my phone, my headset, and my mp3 players. At work, we use USB flash drives to kick off imaging for new computers.

As of right now, there is no power provided by the eSATA bus [wikipedia.org] , so it can't be used for flash readers or drives. This also means that eSATA can't charge anything. Also, it is worth mentioning that the current eSATA standard is 'only' capable of transferring at 3Gbps where USB 3.0 is capable of 4.8Gbps.

Re:and Yet... (2, Insightful)

sam0737 (648914) | about 6 years ago | (#24703409)

Replacing the HDMI, DisplayPort...? Oh nevermind, they didn't enforce encryption on the wire, that's probably not what they are targetting.

Or else Intel would probably get sued by name-not-to-be-mentioned.

Re:and Yet... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24703415)

It will still be slower for sustained transfers than Firewire 400.

The most important part, did they finally make it non CPU intensive?

I also really want to know what they are targeting with it. as Portable storage has esata which will kick it's butt, and USB2.0 is fine for everything else except video, and we have that standardized on firewire.

Ever try to back up 30 gig of files on a USB 2.0 drive? I try to run my back up drives on firewire but in the PC world firewire never really caught on. My Macs have firewire 800 guys time to wake up and smell the new century. I'd like to see enough power running through firewire to run an external DVD or proper sized hard drive but for data rate USB will never equal firewire. USB is fine for dongles and thumb drives but for back up it really does suck. I've seen drives take hours doing what I could do in minutes on my firewires. Part of the problem is better hardware support. In the past I had really mixed luck getting machines to recognize firewire drives. All my current machines do pretty well. It's never been an issue with Macs.

Re:and Yet... (2, Interesting)

Lumpy (12016) | about 6 years ago | (#24703435)

Yes I have and Firewire and eSATA work fantastically, eSATA kicking everything butt hard in speed.

so again, what are they targeting USB3.0 for? eSata will be the standard by the time they get around to releasing it. I even have a eSata port on my laptop and it's a year old!

Re:and Yet... (2, Insightful)

Hoplite3 (671379) | about 6 years ago | (#24704407)

They're targeting everyone with USB 2.0 ports now. People with laptops (which is becoming the largest segment of computer users) have USB ports. If they can buy their next external drive as USB 3.0, they can plug it into the computer they currently have, and when they upgrade to a new laptop with USB 3.0, they'll have an instant speed boost. The power-saving nature of 3.0 will also make it attractive to laptop manufacturers looking to boost battery time. Also, once USB 3.0 controllers end up in the major vendor stack of chips, it'll be hard NOT to get it, just like it's tough to buy a computer without sound (or even superIO).

USB isn't the fastest or least CPU-intensive, but it it by far the most pervasive hook-up on computers. The fact that the same port hooks up everything from humping dog toys to harddrives makes it difficult to knock out of the market.

I think there's probably going to be a bit of a fight between esata and firewire, though. Those seem to be in the same niche -- high-speed data transfer for video et al. Pros and hobbyists will determine the winner there. I still think firewire has more going for it (chaining and a nicer connector), but it's more expensive than esata (or so I heard).

But wireless USB ... yeah. I don't get that at all. USB is all about one connector with backwards compatibility. Take away the connector and ... what's left? I guess if it is cheaper than bluetooth, it might end up in the market.

Re:and Yet... (1)

JustKidding (591117) | about 6 years ago | (#24704469)

What makes USB to be so CPU intensive? I though USB supported DMA transfers, which means they can transfer data without the CPU entirely, after the transfer parameters have been set up.

Re:and Yet... (2, Informative)

A nonymous Coward (7548) | about 6 years ago | (#24704557)

The most important part, did they finally make it non CPU intensive?

Yes. It is interrupt driven rather than polled. Polling was one of the lamest decisions the original USB designers made. For those who don't know the difference, interrupt driven is similar to a phone ringing to get your attention. If it were a polling device, you'd have to pull it out of your pocket every few seconds to see if anyone was calling.

Re:and Yet... (1)

mactard (1223412) | about 6 years ago | (#24704575)

Finally, something that I can use to max out my quad core!

Re:and Yet... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24704939)


USB2.0 is fine for everything else except video, and we have that standardized on firewire.

My Hard disk camera only have USB. Looking at the local electronics store it seems most are USB only. Not really what I would call "standardized" on firewire. I sure could use faster transfer speed though. My next camera will have it, and it will most probably be USB3. I don't know why any consumer would by a DV camera today except for price, since they are cheap.

Firewire might have some slight advantage over USB3 for pros, as a consumer I couldn't care less.

Good luck with your stoneage tapes.

Linux and Mac already support USB 3.0? (4, Informative)

dotancohen (1015143) | about 6 years ago | (#24703289)

From TFA:
Also, new Mass Storage Device drivers will have to be developed for Windows to take advantage of the spec.

Either Mac, Linux, Solaris, the BSDs and Symbian already support USB 3.0, or somebody at MaximumPC needs to pull their head out from under Ballmer's ballsack.

Re:Linux and Mac already support USB 3.0? (1)

RangerRick98 (817838) | about 6 years ago | (#24704755)

[...] somebody at MaximumPC needs to pull their head out from under Ballmer's ballsack.

(Score:5, Informative)

Best. Moderation. Ever.

Wireless USB upgraded to 1.1? (1)

Mr2001 (90979) | about 6 years ago | (#24703307)

What happened to 1.0? I've never seen any wireless USB devices for sale.

If there is such a thing, maybe that explains why it's so hard to find a name-brand Bluetooth mouse anymore...

Yes, but where are my snakes? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24703313)

I could swear they were in the basket like a second ago. What the FUCK?

Wireless USB? Huh? (4, Insightful)

Manip (656104) | about 6 years ago | (#24703323)

Could someone please explain the point of Wireless USB to me?

I mean we have WiFi (802.11) for the longer range stuff and Bluetooth for close proximity devices...

What niche does Wireless USB fit in that the existing technology doesn't?

Re:Wireless USB? Huh? (5, Funny)

HungryHobo (1314109) | about 6 years ago | (#24703407)

It's for when you want to get something off your pen drive and don't want to bother plugging it in!
Or when someone standing beside you wants to get something off your pen drive without bothering to plug it in!

Re:Wireless USB? Huh? (2, Insightful)

sam0737 (648914) | about 6 years ago | (#24703575)

WiFi is a general networking thing, and USB remains to be a point to point between host and one devices thing. Use is also device protocol (use of system drivers allow much greater user experience easier), instead of being just a data transmission protocol as in Wifi.
The software (and the user interface design) is much simpler with that...

Like those nasty DHCP, DNS and related failure/exception cases are out of picture. Encryption is also much easier/cleaner to design because the data are never flow between devices.

WUSB is pretty much the same as Bluetooth, just much faster.

while there are not many type of devices that I can think of could make use of 480Mbps without a power adapter, but think of bluetooth which is dead slow, I would love to have my PDA and Camera sync to the desktop over WUSB.

Re:Wireless USB? Huh? (2, Insightful)

hey! (33014) | about 6 years ago | (#24703693)

To make money for the vendor who controls the specification and owns key patents?

Seriously, Wireless USB seems to be pretty much a direct competitor to Bluetooth. It is faster than the current generation of Bluetooth but no faster than the next version of Bluetooth as planned. I get the impression it is intended to be simpler than Bluetooth. Bluetooth as service discovery and connection security features that are practical stumbling blocks for average users. Aside from weaknesses in its protocols, the biggest weakness in Bluetooth security that users find it inconvenient. They often leave their devices in insecure configurations and vendors often deliver devices with trivial passkeys like 1234.

WUSB claims to implement security in a simpler way, and intuition tells me that there must be a better way, but still I'll believe it when I see it.

WUSB apparently doesn't have service discovery or security. This clearly makes it more of a bona fide "cable replacement" and certainly simplifies managing the WUSB pairing. This will certainly make connecting devices like cameras simpler; on the other hand it will be up to device driver and operating system developers to figure out how to handle devices that offer an array of services, such as phones. So a lot of application interface standardization goes out the window. That's too bad, although it's questionable whether users currently benefit that much from that.

Although these are significant differences, I'm not sure that they'll be decisive in favor of one technology or the other. I'm betting that everything will depend on how cheap throwing a WUSB interface in a device is compared to throwing a Bluetooth interface in. If one interface costs a nickel and the other costs a dime, I'd bet on the nickel interface.

Re:Wireless USB? Huh? (1)

NormalVisual (565491) | about 6 years ago | (#24704031)

It can be quite handy when you need to use a USB device that's located physically close to the computer that's using it, but a cable run to the device would be longer than 16 feet.

I bet they've got a spiffy new name for USB 2.0 (1)

dpbsmith (263124) | about 6 years ago | (#24703441)

Don't tell me, let me guess. They've figured out something they can call USB 2.0 to convince naÃve buyers to go ahead and buy the stale old stock that's on the retailer shelves.

A big dayglo orange sticker saying something like "Full Superspeed-compatible USB" or "100% USB 3.0 Ready" or "Works With USB 3.0."

Full speed (3, Funny)

slashqwerty (1099091) | about 6 years ago | (#24703449)

The maximum speed of the new spec is 4.8Gbps, which is ten times faster than hi-speed.

In other news, USB full speed [photoxels.com] will still be 12Mbps.

Re:Full speed (1)

PrescriptionWarning (932687) | about 6 years ago | (#24704675)

sounds like marketing got ahold of their product USB specs and ran with it straight into the ocean and drowned.

"For Windows" (1, Interesting)

Lord Lode (1290856) | about 6 years ago | (#24703463)

From the article: "Also, new Mass Storage Device drivers will have to be developed for Windows to take advantage of the spec.". What does being developed for Windows mean? Does it mean it will work ONLY in Windows? Are drivers for USB 3.0 not usable on other platforms?

Re:"For Windows" (1)

Lord Lode (1290856) | about 6 years ago | (#24703507)

Aaaah! Please forget my question in the parent post! I misread is as "drives (instead of drivers) have to be developed for Windows only" instead of "windows has to be extended with new drivers". Obviously this will also count for other OSes? :)

Who is this... (1)

I cant believe its n (1103137) | about 6 years ago | (#24703577)

General Failure and why is he reading my USB drive?

If you haven't got anything good to say about it, (4, Informative)

Joseph_Daniel_Zukige (807773) | about 6 years ago | (#24703653)

iNTEL (wimedia [wikipedia.org] ) submarined the xStremeSpectrum/Freescale UWB, which was better tech, just so they could own the patents on all the pipes. That, even though Freescale offered theirs royalty-free.

Now, iNTEL insists on pushing their non-standard UWB into the USB spec.

USB is one of those "We spec our tech conservatively. Our specs are 100% better than you will obtain." technologies. Wireless USB will spill your data into the ether and USB 3, while bursting to n-gigabit, will barely be able to sustain half a gig continuous with only two devices on the line. And multiple bus controllers is an upgrade, still on the drawing board.

Save your money. If serial SCSI is overkill, and your device is not on a LAN, get Firewire. Buy printers with ethernet connectors.

Use USB for keyboards and mice and maybe scanners, like it was intended in the first place.

iNTEL bites.

USB1 and 2 (and now3) = bad connector design (2, Insightful)

atari2600 (545988) | about 6 years ago | (#24703657)

If I had a penny for each time I inserted an USB cable incorrectly, reversed it and probably managed to insert it correctly, I'd be able to afford one of those high end Mac notebooks.

Looks like the saga will continue with USB3 as the connectors are designed the same. Why can't the connector be designed in such a way that just inserting *would just work* without having to worry about alignment. Too much to ask?

On the flip side, Tannenbaum would be happy: Never underestimate the bandwidth of a station wagon full of 1TB external drives with USB3 ports hurtling down the highway. Or Ritchie - whoever said that.

Re:USB1 and 2 (and now3) = bad connector design (1)

Fumus (1258966) | about 6 years ago | (#24704185)

Every USB connector has the USB logo on it's top side. That's how you know which side is up.

Re:USB1 and 2 (and now3) = bad connector design (1)

atari2600 (545988) | about 6 years ago | (#24704315)

Half my cables don't have the little USB logo on them :( - I guess I should replace them. Also what about laptops where USB ports (vertical) are on either side and are mirrored. I guess if I paid attention, it would be less of a problem but I just want to insert.

Re:USB1 and 2 (and now3) = bad connector design (4, Insightful)

Kelbear (870538) | about 6 years ago | (#24704659)

Which side is up on the slot though?

It can be vertical/horizontal and can oftentimes be out of line of sight when reaching behind PCs, or in the dark under a desk.

Re:USB1 and 2 (and now3) = bad connector design (1)

PrescriptionWarning (932687) | about 6 years ago | (#24704719)

sometimes the logo is the same color as the cable and can be hard to see, and then there's the apple macs who decide to flip the port directions around just for kicks.

Re:USB1 and 2 (and now3) = bad connector design (2, Informative)

smoker2 (750216) | about 6 years ago | (#24704327)

what you mean like ethernet, or DVI/HDMI, or svideo, or firewire, or serial, or parallel, or IDE, or sata, or even earthed mains ? Christ, even a simple CD needs to be put in the right way up.
Not everything can be practically wired to a "stereo" jack plug, and even if it were practical, how many times will you jam the wrong thing in the wrong socket, sending +5v the wrong way into an expensive bit of kit ?
Even nature uses specific "sockets" to ensure the correct usage. Sure you can stick food up your ass, but you won't be able to chew it, and it'll just drop out anyway. And as for sex, well there is only one socket that really works as intended.
BTW, you never "inserted a USB cable incorrectly" because, surprise surprise, it wouldn't go in, thereby ensuring that you got it right on the next attempt. You may have "tried" to insert it, but you can do that with any socket arrangement.
I'm interested to hear your alternatives for an idiot proof connector layout. One that doesn't involve "keying" the plug to the socket.

Re:USB1 and 2 (and now3) = bad connector design (1)

atari2600 (545988) | about 6 years ago | (#24704971)

You are missing the point. Off all the connectors you mentioned (Ethernet, HDMI, Svideo, blah blah blah), most if not all are plug once and forget for most part or keep plugging 100 times in 5minutes till it works and forget it for most part.

USB devices on the other hand are numerous and most people (cannot cite a source since this is captain obvious territory) plug in and remove their USB devices frequently (many times a day?) - they not only use this for data transfer but also to charge their devices. Often the ports are vertical (Thinkpad laptops) and to the side (Dell monitors). If i had a better alternative for an idiot proof connector layout (not that I have given thought to it), I'd be patenting it right now.

Obviously the smart guys are paid to that job and imo, they aren't doing it that well. You would be bitching about a stereo jack or power charger connector if it wasn't just round and "insertable" as that's a connector you use a lot (way more frequently than a VGA). As for the CD, it doesn't take a lot of brains to put in a CD the right way. Stop arguing just for the sake of argument eh?

4.8 Gbps is fast? (1, Insightful)

kungfuj35u5 (1331351) | about 6 years ago | (#24703749)

Firewire 800 is how old, and is how fast? About 6.25 Gbps? Seriously, get with the program IEEE, don't bastardize your fast standards while allowing the market to lovingly adopt your slow child.

Re:4.8 Gbps is fast? (3, Funny)

Hal_Porter (817932) | about 6 years ago | (#24704039)

Firewire 800 is how old, and is how fast? About 6.25 Gbps?

If only they named Firewire standards in a way that let users tell how fast it was just from the name.

Not such a hot article... (1)

ckthorp (1255134) | about 6 years ago | (#24704035)

That article isn't so hot. It says things like: "Bi-directional data transfer will be very useful for syncing up information on PDAs and storage backup." The data flow on a PDA sync is way too small (and non-interactive) to be helped by full duplex communications. It also says "bumped the power output from about 100miliamps to 900 milliamps." The current limit is 500 mA. Bumping to 900 mA is pretty worthless.

Wireless USB? Isn't that Bluetooth? (1)

argent (18001) | about 6 years ago | (#24704273)

(yes, I know it's a different standard)

I haven't ever seen a "wireless USB" product in stores, so why should I care about "Wireless USB" when Bluetooth already provides a wireless equivalent of USB?

Re:Wireless USB? Isn't that Bluetooth? (1)

Amamdouh (1130747) | about 6 years ago | (#24704551)

For speed I guess. Bluetooth is painfully slow to make any serious transfers.

Re:Wireless USB? Isn't that Bluetooth? (1)

argent (18001) | about 6 years ago | (#24705053)

Given the speed of adoption of Wireless USB... if it takes another year for Bluetooth 3.0 (or whatever they call the higher speed post-2.1 version) you'd still be better off waiting than having to start shuffling two incompatible short-range wireless standards.

If you want real data transfer rates... (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24705135)

Why hasn't anyone implemented external PCI Express? One of the coolest things about PCIe is that you can put it on a cable with no extra work, due to its serialized and point-to-point nature.

PCIe external connectors [molex.com] have been spec'd for over a year now, in widths from x1 to x16. The x1 connector has 18 conductors in about a DSub-9 size, with the usual screw-locking features.

And we know PCIe works at high, sustained data rates. And it's an Intel-backed standard, so no motive for them to "forget" to put it in their chipsets like they did with FireWire. Also, it would be trivial to make a PCIe board that took its x1 port and just wired it straight to the back panel.

So what's stopping people?

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